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Intel Xeon E5-2600 v4 Broadwell-EP Review

Intel Test Platforms And How We Test

How We Test

We tested the Broadwell-EP-based Xeon E5-2697 v4 on both an Intel Software Development Platform server and the production-ready Supermicro SYS-1028U-TN10RT+. We tested the Haswell-EP-based Xeon E5-2699 v3 and E5-2643 v3 on the Intel Software Development Platform. And we tested the Ivy Bridge-based (v2) CPUs in Intel's Server System R2208GZ4GC. 

CoresThreadsFrequencyMax Turbo BoostCacheTDPMax. Memory SpeedSocket
E5-2697 v418362.3GHz3.6GHz45MB145WDDR4-2400FCLGA2011-3
E5-2699 v318362.3GHz3.6GHz45MB145WDDR4-2133FCLGA2011-3
E5-2643 v36123.4GHz3.7GHz20MB135WDDR4-2133FCLGA2011-3
E5-2690 v210203.0GHz3.6GHz25MB130WDDR3-1866FCLGA2011
E5-2680 v210202.8GHz3.6GHz25MB115WDDR3-1866FCLGA2011
E5-2670 v210202.5GHz3.3GHz25MB115WDDR3-1866FCLGA2011

We benchmark with the open source Linux-Bench script, which is available on Linux-Bench.com and GitHub. ServeTheHome and others in the open source community maintain it. The suite runs from an Ubuntu 14.04 LiveCD either on local storage or through a KVM-over-IP connection. The script installs dependencies and runs several well-known independent open source benchmarks that characterize CPU performance.

Intel "Wildcat Pass" S2G3SY1Q Server

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Intel sent us a pre-production Grantley-R EP S2G3SY1Q (Wildcat Pass) Broadwell Qualification system for our tests. The 2U test bed came with two Xeon E5-2697 v4 CPUs with 18 Hyper-Threaded cores and 45MB of shared cache apiece (that's 2.5MB of last-level cache per core). These beefy CPUs feature a non-AVX base clock of 2.3GHz and a maximum Turbo Boost frequency of 3.6GHz. The E5-2697 v4 offers a base clock of 2.0GHz and a Turbo Boost ceiling of 2.6GHz under AVX-optimized workloads.

The test platform features Intel's C610 chipset family and includes eight 32GB SK hynix DDR4-2400 DIMMs (HMA84GL7AMR4N-UH). Two riser cards enable PCIe connectivity, but weren't used in our testing.

Intel provides this server for use as a software development platform; it's not designed for use in a production environment. As such, it lacks some of the features that facilitate redundancy, such as dual PSUs. One of the PSU bays is covered, but the other houses a single 900W power supply.

Intel Server System R2208GZ4GC

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An Intel R2208GZ4GC functions as one of the workhorses in our enterprise storage lab, and it has the scratches, bumps and bruises to prove it. At its heart, the server features the S2600GZ motherboard (C602 chipset) housed in a production-class chassis with the requisite redundant and hot-swappable fans, along with dual hot-swappable 750W power supplies.

Two riser cards have seen more than their fair share of RAID controllers, HBAs and PCIe SSDs, but again, they weren't required for today's benchmarks. We installed 64GB of Kingston DDR3-1600 memory in 8GB modules. Other notable platform features include quad 1GbE connections and an RMM4 module for remote management.

Paul Alcorn

Paul Alcorn is the Deputy Managing Editor for Tom's Hardware US. He writes news and reviews on CPUs, storage and enterprise hardware.